War On Terror: Reports that Barack Obama received detailed information on the virulent Islamic State terror group in his daily briefings for over a year and did nothing makes him officially our "being there" president.
Leading from behind once again, as he flew to Estonia to draw a red line that Russia shouldn't cross after it finishes gobbling up Ukraine, President Obama told reporters, "We will not be intimidated" by the second beheading of an American journalist and warned that we would "degrade and destroy" the Islamic State.
Degrade? Degrading has been the foreign policy of a president who recently said that he didn't have a strategy yet for dealing with the Islamic State's butchery after watching it train and prepare for a year in its Syrian base before its "sudden" expansion into Iraq.
A former Pentagon official told Fox News that Obama received specific intelligence in daily briefings about the Islamic State's rise. The information was said to be "granular" in detail, laying out IS' intentions and capabilities for at least a year before it seized big chunks of Iraqi territory and started beheading Americans.
Obama's indifference to the briefings was an issue during the 2012 campaign, when former George W. Bush speechwriter Marc Thiessen observed that Obama personally attended only 44% of them. Obama's perceived lack of interest in a terror war, which he claimed was won prior to the Benghazi attack, mirrors his reported lack of interest in the rise of the Islamic State.
At the time, National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor told Thiessen that Obama's attendance at the briefings was "not particularly interesting or useful." Later, when questioned about the lead-up to the Benghazi fiasco, Vietor said: "Dude, this was two years ago. We're still talking about the most mundane thing."
Terrorism and the neglect that creates the vacuum in which it thrives are not mundane things. Terrorism killed Ambassador Chris Stevens, Ty Woods, Glen Doherty and Sean Smith at Benghazi. The terrorists of the Islamic State decapitated Steven Sotloff and James Foley. They're the same group that Obama recently referred to as the "JV" team.
This is not high school, and foreign policy should be conducted by adults. The real JV team is running the White House, led by what Ed Lasky in The American Thinker first referred to as "The Being There President," one who likes to play golf when he isn't fund-raising or taking selfies at gatherings of free world leaders.
Our lack of preparation for and responses to the Islamic State mirror the tragedy of Benghazi. We are being led in troubled times by Chauncey Gardiner, the character in the book and movie "Being There." Novelist Jerzy Kozinski could have written his story about Barack Obama, for it's about an empty suit who came out of nowhere to be a presidential candidate riding on a wave of good-sounding platitudes but in reality had not a clue.
The Islamic State should indeed be destroyed, not just degraded. Find chief Islamic State thug Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and send a Hellfire missile up his tailpipe. And instead of issuing nice-sounding platitudes that "our reach is long, and justice will be served," we should be drawing up target lists, including in Syria, and seeking some battlefield justice.
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